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Article Date: 24 February 2014

Nostalgia drag racing has made a formidable return to the Willowbank Raceway quarter-mile at the weekend with 117 racers taking to the track across nine categories in a celebration of the vehicles of yesteryear.

When the last win light was lit for the first of two Nostalgia events at Willowbank Raceway for 2014 – the next will be held on August 10 – nine winners had been found, with Grant Carpenter (Hot Rod), Jake Donnelly (Top Eliminator), Geoff New (Quick Eliminator), Garry Cameron (Gas), Andrew King (Vintage Gas), Shane Waters (US Muscle), Mitchell Bauer (Aussie Muscle), Ethan Wright (Retro Bikes) and Mark Sugars (Nostalgia Super Stock) all emerging victorious. Next up on track will be round two of the Willowbank Raceway Street Series, which will hit the track on Saturday 1 March 2014 – for all the details, click here.

For Carpenter, it was a day of hard-fought battles, with no easy opponents found in his four rounds of racing.

“In the very first round I had to race against my brother Lee Carpenter, and then in the second round I faced off against Nigel Elsmore, a real great guy I know from around the track who I always like to see win, but unfortunately when it is you in the other lane it is a case of sorry, but I got to do what I got to do,” said Carpenter, who competed in the Hot Rod bracket alongside his brother Lee Carpenter and nephew Jason Carpenter, who was top qualifier for the bracket before being knocked out in the third round.

“Then it was on to the third round where I faced off against one of my close friends, Steve Falzon, before I went on to line up against another on-track friend of mine Charly Cameron.

“Charly and I have been up against each other in four finals now, so there is a bit of a ‘here we go again’ feel to our friendly rivalry, we have both taken wins and today it went my way which I was pretty happy about. There were no easy wins out there, so to take victory felt pretty sweet.”

The Sunday 23 February event saw the return to the event of the Hot Rod class which features pre-1949 Hot Rods.

“It was a really great day out there, seeing the Hot Rods back on the track in their own bracket was a really good feeling and we all got in there and raced our hearts out,” said Carpenter.

“For us Nostalgia racing is really about having fun with friends and family and enjoying the great atmosphere and Sunday’s event ticked all the boxes in that regard. All of the Carpenter cars ran well and while it was hard work out there with no easy wins, there was great close racing and that makes for a great event.

“I really want to thank my family and friends, it is a real pleasure racing with them, and also all of the racers and the Willowbank staff for getting together and making this event happen.”

Nostalgia drag racing will next return to Willowbank Raceway on 10 August 2014, for more information, click here.

Next up at Willowbank Raceway will be the second round of the 2014 Street Series, hitting the track on Saturday 1 March 2014.

As the entry level competition for aspiring drag race champions, the Street Series provides an accessible and affordable competition for Sedan and Motorcycle racers who wish to prove their mettle on the race track while chasing a coveted Queensland Drag Racing Championship (QDRC) trophy.

Saturday’s Street Series event will kick off with time trials from 4.30pm to 6.30pm, with racing from 7.00pm. Spectator entry is available at the gate for just $20.00 for adults and $18.00 for students with ID. Children aged 13 years and under gain free admission. For more information, visit

Willowbank Raceway is Queensland’s premier drag racing facility, located 45 minutes from Brisbane or just a short drive from Ipswich, offering a year-round program of events for the entire family. For more information including a full event calendar, please visit www.willowbankraceway.com.au

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